The Inn's History
The mission style Oxford House Inn was built in 1913 for Charles and Blanche Fox as a private residence by renowned Portland architect John Calvin Stevens. The building was erected on part of the foundation of the Oxford Hotel, a one hundred room resort on Main street which, along with 14 surrounding buildings, burned to the ground in 1906. The Foxes, Fryeburg lumber barons, spared no expense when building their home. Local tight grain oak floors, imported Cyprus woodwork and leaded glass built-in cabinets are among the craftsman style masterpieces the inn showcases today. After serving as the Fox’s home for many years, the building was converted into a doctor’s office for a short time, then back to a residence. In 1985, John and Phyllis Morris, along with their two boys, lovingly turned the building into a restaurant and four room inn. For 23 years the Morrises called The Oxford House Inn their home, serving countless customers with elegance and charm. They turned over the keys to Jonathan and Natalie Spak in September of 2007.
Recently Jonathan has been quoted, when he was 14, saying “Do you know the show Newhart? Well, I want to have a place like that.” Aside from not being in Vermont, that is what he and his wife Natalie found on a trip to the Mt. Washington Valley from their home town of Salisbury, CT in winter of 2007. Upon first inspection of the Oxford House they knew in their hearts it was to be home for them. Jonathan and Natalie (Knickerbocker) Spak met in 2000 while cooking side by side at West Main Restaurant in Lakeville, CT. They soon realized they shared the same passion for the creation of exceptional food and dedication to the hospitality industry, as well as the ambition to own and operate their own business. Jonathan & Natalie were married in 2005 on Block Island, RI.
Jonathan Spak has a degree in Culinary Arts from the prestigious Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. In addition to his formal education, he has extensive experience as a chef for over fifteen years. His food has been enjoyed at restaurants such as The Water Club in New York, NY and West Street Grill and The Boulders Inn both in Litchfield County, CT. Natalie has worked in the hospitality industry throughout New England as both a restaurant and conference center manager and pastry chef. She always looks forward to spending afternoons joining Jonathan in the kitchen to help prepare the inn's wonderful homemade desserts and breads.
We have found much happiness over the last five years in making the inn and Fryeburg our home. While inn keeping has proven to be a 24/7 endeavor, the abundance of natural beauty and outdoor activities found just steps from our door has reinforced that this is the perfect location for us to live and share with our guests. This close proximity allows us to fit in our favorite hobbies including mountain & road biking, skiing, kayaking, fishing, hiking, climbing & snowmobiling while still tending to our inn & restaurant responsibilities. One of the highlights of our day is heading just down the road to Weston's or Sherman's farm to pick out the fresh veggies we will be using to create the evening's meal. If we are missing on a sunny afternoon for an hour, just walk down the farm road to the white sandy beaches of the Saco River located behind the inn and you will most likely find us having a picnic lunch and a quick swim. Maine truly has proven to be "The way life should be" for us! We look forward to sharing our favorite places to go and things to do with you.